MASSEY, Robert
(Service number 24/1113)

First Rank Rifleman Last Rank Rifleman


Date 22 November 1875 Place of Birth Aberdeen, Scotland

Enlistment Information

Date 29 May 1915 Age 39 years
Address at Enlistment Levels, South Canterbury
Occupation Mechanical engineer
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin Mrs J. MASSEY (mother), Union Street Aberdeen, Scotland
Religion Presbyterian
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation New Zealand Rifle Brigade, 2nd Battalion
Unit, Squadron, or Ship Headquarters Staff (attached)
Date 9 October 1915
Transport Tahiti
Embarked From Wellington Destination Suez, Egypt
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With New Zealand Rifle Brigade

Military Awards

Service Medals
Military Awards

Award Circumstances and Date

No information

Prisoner of War Information

Date of Capture
Where Captured and by Whom
Actions Prior to Capture
PoW Serial Number
PoW Camps
Days Interned
Liberation Date


Date Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations

Engine driver


Date 5 May 1962 Age 86 years
Place of Death Taumarunui
Memorial or Cemetery Taumarunui Cemetery
Memorial Reference RSA Block, Plot 43
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

Robert Massey was born on 22 November 1875 at Aberdeen, Scotland (as recorded on his personnel file). His age at death suggests a birth date of 1872 or 1873. He was in New Zealand from at least 1908 when he was an engine driver at Pleasant Point. In late May 1915, men were “offering more freely” at Timaru. R. Massey, Levels, was one of those who had passed the medical test and had signed on to leave Timaru for Trentham by special train on 29 May. He was one of the men given a rousing farewell when they went north to the concentration camp at Trentham in late May 1915. After afternoon tea in the Drill Shed and an address by the Mayor, amidst much cheering from the crowds, they were played to the railway Station by the Regimental Band and joined recruits from the south (Invercargill, Dunedin and Oamaru) on a very long special troop train. He enlisted on 29 May 1915. Single and Presbyterian, he named his mother as next-of-kin – Mrs J. Massey, Union Street, Aberdeen, Scotland.

Rifleman R. Massey embarked with the New Zealand Rifle Brigade attached to Headquarters Staff per the “Tahiti”. He departed from Wellington for Suez on 9 October 1915. An October 1917 hospital report listed his as a severe case. He returned to New Zealand per Draft No. 148 (733 names), arriving in March 1918. In 1919 he was an engine driver at Burnett’s Face in the Buller district, and afterwards in the North Island. Robert Massey died on 5 May 1962 at Taumarunui, aged 89 years, and was buried in the RSA section of Taumarunui Cemetery. By his Will, dated 7 March 1961, he bequeathed all to two named friends. His estate amounted to £400, made up of £350 in his Account Australia and New Zealand Bank, Taumarunui, £13 Cash, £25 Furniture and effects, and £10 Accrued age benefit.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [16 May 2022]; Nz Electoral Rolls ( [20 May 2022]; Taumarunui Cemetery burial record (Ruapehu District Council) [19 May 2022]; Timaru Herald, 26 & 31 May 1915, Evening Post, 17 October 1917, 13 March 1918, Dominion, 14 March 1918, NZ Times, 24 March 1918 (Papers Past) [14, 20 & 22 May 2022]

External Links

Related Documents

No documents available. 

Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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